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Measuring true sales and underreporting with matched firm-level survey and tax-office data

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  • Zhou, Fujin
  • Oostendorp, Remco

Abstract

This paper uses firm-level survey data matched with official tax records to estimate the unobserved true sales of formal firms in Mongolia. Taking into account firm-level incentives to comply with taxes and a production function technology linking unobserved true sales with observable firm-level production characteristics, the authors derive a multiple-indicators, multiple-causes model predicting unobserved true sales. Comparing predicted true sales with sales reported to the tax office, the analysis finds that 38.6 percent of firm-level sales are underreported. It also finds evidence that firm-level survey data suffer from significant underreporting. Finally, the paper compares this approach with two alternative approaches to measuring underreporting by firms.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5628.

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Date of creation: 01 Apr 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5628

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Keywords: Taxation&Subsidies; Microfinance; Emerging Markets; Economic Theory&Research; Debt Markets;

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  1. Aigner, Dennis & Lovell, C. A. Knox & Schmidt, Peter, 1977. "Formulation and estimation of stochastic frontier production function models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 21-37, July.
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  10. Donald Siegel, 1997. "The Impact Of Computers On Manufacturing Productivity Growth: A Multiple-Indicators, Multiple-Causes Approach," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(1), pages 68-78, February.
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  12. Chaudhuri, Kausik & Schneider, Friedrich & Chattopadhyay, Sumana, 2006. "The size and development of the shadow economy: An empirical investigation from states of India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 428-443, August.
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  14. Junko Koeda & Era Dabla-Norris, 2008. "Informality and Bank Credit: Evidence from Firm-Level Data," IMF Working Papers 08/94, International Monetary Fund.
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